Hi, I'm Chris Capre, founder of 2ndSkiesForex. I'm a verified profitable trader and trading mentor. As a professional trader, I specialize in trading Price Action and the Ichimoku cloud. As a trading mentor, I have one goal: to change the way you think, trade and perform using 18 years of trading experience and cutting edge neuroscience to wire your brain for successful trading. Want to improve your trading edge and mindset? Check out my trading courses here.
The Comfort Zone, Trading Psychology & Successful Forex Trading
In today’s article I’m going to talk about an important subject in forex trading psychology called ‘the comfort zone‘.
Before we get into this important trading and mindset lesson, I’d like to talk about a close relative of mine named ‘Vesh‘.
Vesh recently had his 2nd hemorrhagic stroke in 5 years.
Most people who have two hemorrhagic strokes aren’t very functional. Vesh is definitely an exception.
He was a database programmer for decades, and ironically, after the stroke, can still do database programming.
However there are many things he cannot do as a result of his two strokes.
Such as numbers…he’s not that good with numbers any more, and often gets them confused. If he’s talking about something from 100 years ago, he might say ‘Back over 20,000 years ago in England, the British…”
To compensate for his brain being damaged, he eats the same thing every day. It’s what he’s most ‘comfortable’ with and makes it easier for him. Man is it easy grocery shopping for him every two weeks 🙂
How your brain and body is wired right now is what you feel most ‘comfortable‘ doing. My friend Ross runs 5 days a week, 2 miles a day, so he feels quite ‘comfortable‘ running 2 miles a day 5x per week.
However if one day, I came up to him and said, “Today you’re going to run 20 miles, and you’ll do this 3x this week,” Ross is not going to feel very ‘comfortable‘. In fact, he’s going to feel profoundly uncomfortable attempting such a feat.
Just like Ross, whatever is outside of your brain, body and psychology to do comfortably right now is called being ‘outside’ your ‘comfort zone‘.
This is where an article by Noah Kagan comes in. Noah is a highly successful entrepreneur who recently wrote an article called ‘How to Step Outside Your Comfort Zone in 2018′.
It’s a well written article with some simple steps to accomplish this, which I definitely recommend reading.
However he makes one major error in how he defines growth in relationship to your comfort zone.
He says, “growth happens outside of your comfort zone.”
While technically true, it’s also ‘false‘ at the same time. Wait, how can something be both true and false at the same time? Let me explain.
Growth in your brain, mindset and body will happen when you go outside your normal programming, or what you’re currently wired to do easily now.
The same goes for you and your trading, and this is why it’s important to go ‘outside‘ your comfort zone, so Noah is correct in saying ‘growth happens outside your comfort zone‘.
However, Noah fails to make an important distinction here regarding your comfort zone.
There is a range you can go beyond this where there is ‘growth’. This range or ‘zone’ has also been discussed by those who talk about ‘being in the zone’ or ‘peak performance’ (image below).
However, if you go too far outside this zone or range, you won’t grow at all. In fact, you will almost certainly fail.
Hence there is a range you can go outside of your comfort zone and still have growth. This is what I call the ‘challenge zone‘ or ‘learning zone‘.
Asking Ross to do 2.5 miles per day is ‘challenging’ himself.
But asking Ross to run 20 miles today, and he won’t grow. He’ll struggle, experience pain, and most likely will fail.
The same goes for you and your trading (especially if you’re struggling).
Where you are right now in your trading process, there are definitely some strategies, methods or tasks you are just not ready for right now.
For example, if you don’t know how to read the basic pillars of price action context in the forex market, you’re definitely not ready to trade a price action strategy. If you don’t even have a trading plan that you can easily execute day in day out, you’re not ready to trade $10 million dollars.
Hence while Noah was correct in stating that ‘growth happens outside your comfort zone‘, so does failure by going too far outside your comfort zone. Venturing too far outside your comfort zone is what I call the ‘panic zone‘ or ‘failure zone‘ (see below).
You have to make this important distinction (and know the difference) if you want to succeed in trading forex.
I think this is where most struggling traders in their trading process fail. I see many traders taking on methods, skills or strategies they simply aren’t ready for yet.
While I think it’s a good idea to ‘challenge‘ yourself and go outside your comfort zone, going too far will almost always lead to failure.
It’s important to learn what are the various steps, skills and mindset you’ll need to learn along the way so you don’t go too far outside your comfort zone, and set yourself up for inevitable failure.
Thinking you can start making money trading price action without having a trading plan, without proper risk management, or without forex training isn’t a path to success. It’s setting yourself up for certain failure.
This is one of the most common mistakes I see struggling traders and students make.
I get it…you seriously want to succeed in trading forex, you want to work from home, and make more money than you could in any ‘job‘. And you see that I make money trading and am a professional trader.
I get it…who doesn’t want to do that? That’s why you’re here, to learn how to trade the forex markets.
But there is a difference between the challenge zone (growing), and failing consistently (failure zone).
If you are constantly losing money trading, and consistently making the same mistakes, most likely you’re going too far beyond your current skill set.
You’re likely in the ‘failure zone‘, which 99+% of the time will lead to you losing money trade after trade, month after month, feeling like you’re not going anywhere.
If you have this feeling, that is actually a good thing, because it’s your self-image and unconscious mind telling you “Hey, you’re too far outside your comfort zone.”
Hence if you want to stop making the same mistakes day in-day out, month and after month, losing money consistently, then check out my trading course or my mindset course, both of which give you insights into the psychology of successful traders as well as a step by step process on how to trade successfully.
Did I describe your process and trading experience? Does any of this sound like you? If so, I want to hear your comments and feedback below.